Archived project

The Neuro-Turn in the European Social Sciences and Humanities (NESSHI)

Updates
0 new
0
Recommendations
0 new
0
Followers
0 new
11
Reads
0 new
139

Project log

Clement Levallois
added a research item
Clement Levallois
added a research item
‘Neuromarketing’ designates both a developing industry and an academic research field. This study documents the emergence of neuromarketing through the first mention of the term in traditional and new media until the stabilization of the field. Our main interest is to establish whether neuromarketing developed separately as an academic field and as an industry (with knowledge transfer from the former to the latter), or whether it was an act of co-creation. Based on a corpus gathered from a systematic search on the Web, we trace the multiple forms of engagement between academic and commercial communities, echoed but also shaped by reports in traditional and new media. We find that neuromarketing developed an identity through a set of practices and a series of debates which involved intertwined communities of academic researchers and practitioners. This result offers an alternative to the narrative of ‘knowledge transfer’ between academia and the industry and offers a contribution on how to use new kinds of digital sources in business history.
Clement Levallois
added 2 research items
Following the 'Decade of the Brain', increased intellectual exchanges have developed between neuroscience and the social sciences and humanities (SSH). This essay examines how these new contacts between SSH and neuroscience reshaped the practices of observation of social scientists. Focusing on economists and the newly emerged field of neuroeconomics, we point first to the novelty of this episode – experimentation in the lab was foreign to economists’s practices for most of the twentieth century. We then layout the frictions generated by these new practices, showing that new technologies and conventions of interpretation, such as pictorial forms of evidence, run against deep-seated conceptions of what an economist’s skills and standards of observation should consist of. The multiplicity of technologies of observation offered by neuroscience and the increasing number of actors (academic or not) claiming expertise in them are making even more complex the process of adoption of hybrid practices, and the creation of 'neuro-SSH'.
The social and neural sciences share a common interest in understanding the mechanisms that underlie human behaviour. However, interactions between neuroscience and social science disciplines remain strikingly narrow and tenuous. We illustrate the scope and challenges for such interactions using the paradigmatic example of neuroeconomics. Using quantitative analyses of both its scientific literature and the social networks in its intellectual community, we show that neuroeconomics now reflects a true disciplinary integration, such that research topics and scientific communities with interdisciplinary span exert greater influence on the field. However, our analyses also reveal key structural and intellectual challenges in balancing the goals of neuroscience with those of the social sciences. To address these challenges, we offer a set of prescriptive recommendations for directing future research in neuroeconomics.
Jon Leefmann
added a research item
The Human Sciences after the Decade of the Brain brings together exciting new works that address today’s key challenges for a mutual interaction between cognitive neuroscience and the social sciences and humanities. Taking up the methodological and conceptual problems of choosing a neuroscience approach to disciplines such as philosophy, history, ethics and education, the book deepens discussions on a range of epistemological, historical, and sociological questions about the "neuro-turn" in the new millennium. The book’s three sections focus on (i) epistemological questions posed by neurobiologically informed approaches to philosophy and history, (ii) neuroscience’s influence on explanations for social and moral behavior, and (iii) the consequences of the neuro-turn in diverse sectors of social life such as science, education, film, and human self-understanding. This book is an important resource both for students and scholars of cognitive neuroscience and biological psychology interested in the philosophical, ethical, and societal influences of—and on—their work as well as for students and scholars from the social sciences and humanities interested in neuroscience
Jon Leefmann
added 6 research items
In bioethics, the first decade of the twenty-first century was characterized by the emergence of interest in the ethical, legal and social aspects of neuroscience research. At the same time an ongoing extension of the topics and phenomena addressed by neuroscientists was observed alongside its rise as one of the leading disciplines in the biomedical science. One of these phenomena addressed by neuroscientists and moral psychologists was the neural processes involved in moral decision-making. Today both strands of research are often addressed under the label of neuroethics. To understand this development we recalled literature from 1995 to 2012 stored in the Mainz Neuroethics Database (i) to investigate the quantitative development of scientific publications in neuroethics; (ii) to explore changes in the topics of neuroethics research within the defined time intervall; (iii) to illustrate the interdependence of different research topics within the neuroethics literature; (iv) to show the development of the distribution of neuroethics research on peer-reviewed journals; and (v) to display the academic background and affiliations of neuroethics researchers. Our analysis exposes that there has been a demonstrative increase of neuroethics research while the issues addressed under this label had mostly been present before the establishment of the field. We show that the research on the ethical, legal and social aspects of neuroscience research is hardly related to neuroscience research on moral decision-making and that the academic backgrounds and affiliations of many neuroethics researchers speak for a very close entanglement of neuroscience and neuroethics. As our article suggests that after more than one decade there still is no dominant agenda for the future of neuroethics research, it calls for more reflection about the theoretical underpinnings and prospects to establish neuroethics as a marked-off research field distinct from neuroscience and the diverse branches of bioethics.